National Catholic Register


Letters 11.30.2008

BY The Editors

November 30-December 6, 2008 Issue | Posted 11/24/08 at 1:08 PM


Religious Freedom

Why are all the protesters still trying to make gay “marriage” legal? (“Prop 8’s Sore Losers,” Nov. 16). They already have every legal right to form a civil union. Is it so hard to see why their relationship is not the same as a marriage between a man and a woman?

When the California state judges overturned the decision of the voting public and made gay “marriage” legal, they set forth a civil law that conflicted with religious law. This is exactly why we have the First Amendment: to ensure there is a separation of church and state so that state laws do not force religious entities to accept something contrary to their beliefs.

We must protect our right to religious freedom. No law should force teachers to teach, children to learn, churches to accept, or society to embrace any activities which God has professed as immoral and sinful.

After Thanksgiving, let us remember the primary reason the Pilgrims came to this country: to establish a country where people are free to have religious beliefs and teach God’s words without fear of persecution.

Laura Jones

Yorba Linda, California

Gallon of Milk Reality

Election night, as I picked up a gallon of milk, I expressed my discontent at the results of our election that led to Obama “Making History” (Nov. 16). The clerk said she was delighted by the results. Here was our conversation:

Justin: “This means more abortion.”

Clerk: “I am pro-choice.”

Justin: “The choice to kill an unborn child?”

Clerk: “That’s my right.”

Justin: “You believe it is your right to kill an unborn child?”

Clerk: “Yes. It’s my body. I can kill my child if I want to.”

Justin: “Think about what you just said. You said you believe you have the right to kill your unborn child. This is the same argument used by slave owners!”

Clerk: “It is my right.”

I was deeply disturbed and walked out shaking my head. In light of this exchange, my first questions to our new president-elect are: “Will you be president to the unborn?” and “Will you protect their right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness?”

Justin Stroh

Faribault, Minnesota

A Defeat for Life

As black pro-lifers say in “Making History” (Nov. 16), President-elect Obama’s triumph is really a defeat for blacks and the first ideal of America’s founding: life. The black rate of abortion is twice blacks’ percentage of our population, and now with Obama as the first pro-abortion president, this black genocide will worsen. About 11 million blacks have been aborted since 1973, almost twice Obama’s margin of victory. How many blacks like Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Oprah Winfrey, Bill Cosby, Jackie Robinson and Barry White have been sacrificed to this “culture of death”?

President-elect Obama says that he found Jesus Christ, but he is not the one in the Bible, who says, “Love one another as I have loved you” (John 13:34).

William J. Downey
Manhasset, New York

Thank You, Bishops

I would just like to salute those great bishops who spoke out forcefully against abortion prior to our presidential election (“The Shepherds Speak,” Nov. 2). You are like mighty oaks standing amid a forest of trembling aspens.    

Daniel Yates

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 

Take Up This Cross

I read with delight that many of our bishops spoke out fearlessly (“The Shepherds Speak,” Nov. 2). Honestly, if it takes the election of a 100% pro-abortion president to rouse the bishops to lift up their staffs and teach the truths of our faith, if it takes the election of a president who will support gay “marriage,” advocate the destruction of embryos for medical “research,” who will not object to the murder of the elderly and infirm in the name of “compassion” to cause our bishops to stand up and seek out virtual martyrdom, then perhaps it is worth it.

Our Church in the United States has been far too comfortable for far too long. God has sent us this cross as a teaching and a blessing; let us take it up with joy, and carry it faithfully for the glory of Jesus Christ.

May God bless all our bishops with wisdom and courage to recognize this election as the work of the Holy Spirit meant to renew the Church in the United States.

Peter Dohms
Pensacola, Florida

A Catholic Thanks Obama

I, too, have “Hope for America” (Nov. 16) because of “The Pro-Life Majority” you discuss. As a faithful Catholic, I’d like to personally thank President-elect Obama. As the most anti-life presidential candidate in history, why would I possibly thank him? Let me explain.

Our Church teaches that God can always bring good out of evil. The greatest evidence of this is that the most heinous crime of all time, the murder of the Son of God on the cross, brought about the salvation of all mankind.

Barack Obama’s total support of abortion and promise to remove all abortion restrictions through the Freedom of Choice Act has produced an unintended result. Catholics are finally standing up and saying, “We’ve had enough!” He has awakened the “sleeping giant” that may finally bring an end to this slaughter.

How is it that some Catholics (whose Church clearly teaches that abortion is murder and is always a grave offense) found it acceptable to vote for Mr. Obama, who not only fully supports abortion, but pledges to make it even more accessible? It’s because their fellow Catholics were afraid to speak up.

Fortunately, the prospect of an Obama presidency has caused things to change. The pro-life movement is becoming energized. E-mails are being circulated; priests and deacons are starting to talk about abortion from the pulpit; people are getting involved in pro-life activities; pro-abortion Catholic politicians are getting reprimanded by our bishops for their scandalous statements, and in-the-womb photography is making it impossible to deny that these unborn fetuses are really babies.

I call on my fellow Catholics to continue to stand up for life. Visit the pro-life page on the Catholic Truth website ( to get the true facts on abortion and what you can do to help. The helpless unborn children need our help.

Gary Zimak

Founder, The Catholic Truth lay apostolate

Cinnaminson, New Jersey

Pro-Life Backup

The possibility of reversing Roe v. Wade by voting for a pro-life presidential candidate was enough motivation for me to reconsider my vote and vote for the pro-life candidate at the last minute. He did not win.

As you noted in “Life Didn’t Lose — the GOP Did” (Nov. 16), I think this is a wake-up call for the pro-life community, in that more needs to be done to strengthen the network of social service organizations that are committed to helping needy mothers who decide not to abort but keep their babies.

Needy mothers need to know that help is available and that there is an alternative to abortion. Pro-life groups need to do more than offer lip service to the needy.

Joseph P. Nolan

Waterbury, Connecticut

Real Truth

In defense of the article “Teaching by Reason and Revelation” (Nov. 9) about Janet Smith’s book on the right to privacy, I agree that today’s society does have a “misguided sense of privacy.” It’s frightening that everyone wants to think they can come up with their own truths and opinions about privacy, freedom and choice. Some people seem to use their “right to privacy” to enable them to have the freedom to do what they want or the freedom to be left alone, so they can promote their own ideals of freedom.

As the late Pope John Paul II stated in his encyclical Fides et Ratio (Faith and Reason), “Every truth … presents itself as universal … If something is true, then it must be true for all people and at all times.” When everyone has their own opinions and truths about something, there ends up being chaos and no absolute or universal truths at all. So when we submit to relativism, we end up looking for an illusionary freedom that is far from the truth.

When we distort the definition of truth in order to get what we want, namely privacy and freedom, the results are confusion and situations that could have been avoided, such as abortions. Again, as Pope John Paul II wrote, “Truth enlightens man’s intelligence and shapes his freedom” (Veritatis Splendor, The Splendor of Truth).

In the end, it’s clear the truth will set you free.

Olivia Sielaff, age 15

Emmitsburg, Maryland


The correct credit for this Our Lady of Mississippi Abbey photo, which was featured in the Christmas Gift Guide (Nov. 9), is John R. Cremons.